One of the leading ethereum software developers said the blockchain network’s much-anticipated technical upgrade known as the Merge will likely be completed a few months after June.
The comment helps to establish a possible timeline for the completion after ethereum passed another major test on Monday. The network’s developers had launched a mainnet shadow fork to stress test the new upcoming software.
"No firm date yet, but we’re definitely in the final chapter of PoW on ethereum,” Tim Beiko, a computer scientist who coordinates Ethereum developers tweeted on Tuesday, referring to the way transactions on the Ethereum network are ordered that is known as proof of work.
The Merge will enable the blockchain to move from the proof-of-work consensus mechanism, which uses energy-intensive specialised computers to validate transactions and secure the network, to proof-of-stake. The new mechanism allows ether holders or stakers to operate as nodes to perform those tasks.
Beiko earlier said he wouldn’t be surprised the Merge happens in the fall but didn’t give a more specific timeline. Ether outperformed bitcoin in late March as another test for the upgrade went through on March 15. Beiko didn’t immediately respond to a request for additional comment.
The Merge, which aims to help the network run more efficiently and reduce carbon footprint, has seen multiple delays since its inception.
Some ethereum miners, who leverage specialised computers such as repurposed graphics cards or machines with application-specific integrated chips, to secure the network and get subsidies in ether from the blockchain, are betting on another delay so that they have more time to make a profit from their mining operations.
Ether rose less than 1% to around $3,000 on Wednesday. It has slumped about 18% this year, while larger rival Bitcoin has decreased around 14%.